This week, Mandy hosts the second episode discussing the book The Guardians by John Grisham. We rate the book, give our ideas on how to host this bookclub and continue our discussion about wrongful convictions. 


Book club discussion questions

1. If you have read John Grisham before, how do you think this stacks up to his other books?

While the book wasn’t actually based on a true story, it is inspired by actual circumstances and by a real-life organization that helps innocent convicts. Does that change anything for you about the story that we read?

2. Just Mercy - true story - kept getting the two stories confused even though one was fiction and one was not. Think this gives a lot of clout to Grisham’s writing…..He just wrote something so so close to what we see in real life. Like we talked about in last week’s episode, I think he writes out of 1) a passion for the injustice of innocent convicts, but 2) the first-hand knowledge that this stuff actually happens.

3. Let's talk about the title - can someone summarize why this book is called “The Guardians?” It’s a ministry run by attorneys whose ministry is to rescue innocent people. I love this because……yes, ministry…..but they are still attorneys, and they act like attorneys AND they are in ministry. Ministry can be so many things – it doesn’t only mean that you are out directly telling people about Jesus. Jesus’ ministry – healing people – and he even told one lady to go and not even tell anyone that He had healed her! That is so opposite of what we would think of as ministry.

Matthew 8:4

Mark 7:36

4. Have you ever been wrongly accused of something?

How did it feel?

What did you do?

Did anyone help you?

*Grading Scale

A - All Good

B - Better than most

C - Could have been better

D - Disappointing

F - Failure on all levels

Ratings for this book

Mandy- C

Sarah - C

Katie - B

Holly - C

Ideas for hosting a book club for The Guardians

Location - Savannah— let’s GO! 😊😊😊 or, more practically, a roadside restaurant, a court building ; a jail ; a haunted house

Activity - one of those solve a crime boxes, take a road trip , “breakout“ room

Décor – Tennessee paraphernalia, a skeleton, flashlight

Attire - your best courtroom attire; jail clothes ; priest’s collar

Favor - Gas card, flashlight

Food - what you would choose as your last meal on death row (Katie - I would choose Holly’s Hunger Games lamb stew)

Music – Johnny Cash (Folsom Prison Blues)


Show Notes



The Next Right Thing by Emily Freeman

The Next Right Thing podcast

Frozen 2

Just Mercy

For Life - Isaac Wright Jr.

Why Now, White People - Code Switch Podcast

The Innocent Man - Netflix

Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell ( Best 13th Episode Ever : "Talking to Strangers" ; Best 14th Episode Ever : Stranger Danger )

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Johnny Cash (Folsom Prison Blues)

Upcoming Books

Sarah's Next Book : The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd

Katie's Next Book : Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Holly's Next Book : The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown

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  • The BBCE

Updated: Jun 27, 2020

This week Mandy hosts our book club discussion about the book The Guardians by John Grisham. We talk about wrongful convictions, Grisham's writing style and so much more. Please join us for our lively discussion of this legal thriller. 


Book club questions

  1. What did you guys think of the settings? The towns? Really close to home!

  2. What did you think of the story itself - the plot? (i.e. - aside from anything else, did the story itself grab your attention?)

  3. Did you think that this book was predictable? If so, what was predictable? If not, what surprised you?

  4. John Grisham writes what critics began to call "legal thrillers." That is a packed term with two loaded words. Does this book live up to the term?

  5. I am a huge huge fan of true crime. I actually listen to Crime Junkie every Monday and one of the things that always gets to me is when it seems like there is an agenda to convict the wrong person. Even though this is a book of fiction, I think that injustice, in the form of wrongful convictions happens ALL. THE. TIME. People get framed (like with the flashlight), people get put in jail when there is no evidence connecting them to the crime scene, people get convicted based off perjured testimonies. In this book, what are some ways that Quincy was pinned for the murder of Keith Russo?

  6. John Grisham pretty much sets all of his books in the South or the Deep South. We are all aware of the South’s history with white supremacy and racial injustice. Grisham started writing in the mid-80s, so it’s interesting to read some of his older books from 30 years ago and see that there are race undertones in all of them, but I do think the perspective is different. How does race play a factor in this story?


Show Notes

"Rethinking Incarcerations" by Dominique DuBois Gilliard

"13th" on Netflix

Jen Hatmaker & Lisa Sharon Harper "White Women's Toxic Tears"

Up First Podcast "BONUS : American Police"

Crime Junkie


"The Innocent Man" series on Netflix based off John Grisham's only non-fiction work "The Innocent Man"

"Just Mercy" film - Watch free during the month of June

"Just Mercy" book

"The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes" by Suzanne Collins (Podcast Episodes #19 and #20)

Theodore Boon series by John Grisham

"A Time to Kill" film

"A Time to Kill" by John Grisham

"Gray Mountain"by John Grisham

"Camino Island" by John Grisham

"Camino Winds" by John Grisham

The Lincoln Lawyer

"Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" by John Berendt

The University of Tennessee College of Law

"Rocky Top" by the Osborne Brothers

Dalton, GA

Chattanooga, TN


Upcoming Books

Mandy's Next Book : The Guardians by John Grisham

Sarah's Next Book : The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd

Katie's Next Book : Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Holly's Next Book : The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown

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Updated: Jun 23, 2020

I can hardly believe that we have recorded twenty episodes! Thank you for your support as we put ourselves out into this crazy world.

This week's episode is all about The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins. This episode is FULL of spoilers. We start our discussion off by telling what our Covey names would be... what's a Covey name? It's the name of a ballad and a color. Here are ours...

Sarah - Constellation Yellow (based off the song "Constellations" by Ellie Holcomb)

Mandy - Free Yellow by (based off the song "Free Fallin' by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers)

Katie - Tennessee Orange by (based off the song "Tennessee" by Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors)

Holly - Clair de Blue based of the song "Clair de Lune" by Claude Debussy )

Book club discussion questions

1. Tigris and his "Grandma'am" are always projecting onto Coriolanus that he will someday be the president of Panem and that "Snow always lands on top." How do you think this impacted his thought process? Do you think it helped or hindered him?

Did you ever find yourself sympathizing with Coriolanus?

2. “If the people that were suppose to protect you played so fast and loose with your life then how did you survive? Not by trusting them, that was for sure. And if you couldn’t trust them then who could you trust?” Snow said this right after Dr. Gaul had Clemensia bitten by the snakes. Have you ever felt like this with our government? If so, what might be a solution to the problem?

3. Dr. Gaul talking to Coriolanus after he comes out of the arena : "Who are human beings?" This section of the podcast Mandy read from a portion of the book.

4. “On the whole I think we are right about needing order.” -- Corio to Lucy Gray Lucy Gray in reply : “The Covey believe you are put on earth to reduce the misery not add to it." Do you think the Hunger Games are right? Discuss order and its place.

*Grading Scale

A - All Good

B - Better than most

C - Could have been better

D - Disappointing

F - Failure on all levels

Ratings for this book

Mandy- C

Sarah - C

Katie - B

Holly - B

Ideas for hosting a book club for The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Location - Recreation of the hob, Small local bar/restaurant with live music

Activity -  Make something resourceful (like Tigras did with the shirt) Get random ingredients and try and make a yummy meal out of it. Create a ballad for your life :P 

DécorWhite Roses 

Attire - Redesign one of your old outfits into something awesome ; Snake dress

Favor - Lavender Soap

Food - Cabbage Soup, Boiled Potatoes, Bread, Butter, Squash, Pie, Sandwiches, Lamb Stew with Plums

MusicFolk music

Favorite quotes from the book

Nothing you can take from me was ever worth keeping”  Lucy Gray

If history teaches you anything it’s how to make the unwilling comply”  Professor Crispos Demigloss ( We didn't get a chance to talk about this on the show but look out for some social media posts about it this week.)

You’ve no right to starve people, to punish them for no reason, no right to take away their life and freedom. Those are things everyone is born with and they're not yours for the taking. Winning a war doesn’t give you that right, having more weapons doesn’t give you that right, being from the Capitol doesn’t give you that right. Nothing does.Sejanus Plinth

Show Notes

Enneagram ( Podcast Episodes #17 and #18)

Dolly Parton's America

The Choice: Embrace the Possible by Dr. Edith Eger (Podcast Episode's #11 and #12)

Upcoming Books

Mandy's Next Book: The Guardians by John Grisham

Sarah's Next Book:

The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd

Katie's Next Book:

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Holly's Next Book: The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown

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